August 6, 2020, at Phupan Room, Khon Kaen Hotel, Khon Kaen – Cholangiocarcinoma Research Institute of Khon Kaen University led by Assoc. Prof. Watcharin Loilom, Ph.D., a member and secretary of the institute joining Faculty of Education to carry out a project on teaching school students about liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma. The team from Faculty of Education was led by Assoc. Prof. Ladda Silanoi. The training was in the form of a workshop under the title, “Applying the curriculum of immunity building against liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma in the Northeast in classrooms at Ban Hat District and Banphai District, Khon Kaen”. The workshop is under the challenging research project: Liver Fluke-Free Thailand. The workshop was organized with cooperation of Cholangiocarcinoma Research Institute, National Research Council, Office of Primary Education Service Area 2 Khon Kaen, Office of Secondary Education Service Area 25. Over 171 teachers attended divided into 118 primary school teachers, 43 secondary school teachers, and 10 high school teachers. Dr. Anusart Sonsilapapong, Director of Office of Primary Education Service Area 2 Khon Kaen chaired the opening ceremony.
Dr. Anusart Sonsilapapong said, “It is known that cholangiocarcinoma is a problem that has existed in Thailand for a long time. The incidence and mortality rates are very high among the working-age people, especially in the Northeast and the North. This means socio-economic losses. The government has continuously attempted to solve this problem; however, the public health sector alone cannot achieve the goal. Collaboration of network is a necessity for integration of implementation in problem solving.
The collaboration has to begin from upstream down to downstream, i.e., eradicating the flukes and reducing the spread in water sources. Liver flukes have to be dispelled in the reservoir host animals. Food and nutrition should be safe while the youths are more intellectually protected. Health information must be systematically managed and can be tracked. Disease screening and treatment should start from the beginning so that the chance for recovery will be higher and at the same time, the quality of life of patients will be increased. As such, social and economic losses will sustainably be reduced. This can be achieved by building awareness among children and youths in order to stop the problem from liver fluke and cholangiocarcinoma. Children’s behaviors in consuming raw food should be changed while safe food consumption behaviors enhanced. The behaviors will hopefully be adopted in the children’s families and hence the problem from liver fluke and cholangiocarcinoma shall be eliminated.”
Assoc. Prof. Watcharin Loilom said, “Liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma have been one of the health problems of Thai people, and the government has always tried to solve the problem. On June 21, 2016, the cabinet at that time had a resolution to carry out a one-decade strategy to eliminate the problem from the diseases. The Liver Fluke-Free and cholangiocarcinoma-free Thailand project was set up with an aim to do away with the problem from 2016 to 2025, or totally remove the diseases from Thailand within 10 years.
Campaign will be carried out to change people ‘s behaviors, manage the environment and reservoir animals. Food manufacturing will be disease-free. The public should be screened for the diseases so that those at the initial stage can be treated. The health care team will be developed. These are the issues that KKU’s Cholangiocarcinoma Research Institute will put into effect. The National Research Council provides monetary support through the challenging research project: Liver Fluke-Free Thailand. The work has been continuously carried out, while resources including knowledge, techniques, specialists, budget have been provided. The work has also been collaborated by the network and the Public Health Committee Area 7, that acts as the key organization to drive forward the policy in sustainably mitigate the people’s health problems. The following 6 important issues have been under the implementation:
Building perception and awareness of liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma
Building cognizance of liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma among children and youths
Safe foods: fluke-free fish
Fluke-free reservoir animals
Screening and treatment of liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma
Development of sustainable waste management system
Building cognizance of liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma among children and youths is an important issue that will cut the cycle of the diseases from the origin. With children and youths receiving accurate knowledge, awareness of the diseases will be instilled in them. On June 26, 2020, an MOU signing ceremony was held for propulsion of the curriculum of liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma in Ban Hat and Banphai Districts in Khon Kaen, with an aim to make children and youths become aware of liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma. The two districts were to become a model area.
The training will be for 2 days on August 6-7, 2020. It featured lectures on the importance of liver fluke disease and cholangiocarcinoma and solution of the problem; the process that helps development of cholangiocarcinoma from liver fluke; Protection against liver fluke, and innovation in screening cholangiocarcinoma and treatment in the 4.0 era. There was a session on making learning management plans, teaching demonstration (in groups), demonstration of media producing, and practicing session on media production for different levels. Trainers were from Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Education, Khon Kaen University.
News / Photos: Panithan Sribunruang